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Thursday, 20 May 2010

Comments

David M.

I don't think the real point is what Facebook's policy is or whether they follow it. The reason "Everyone Piss on a Crucifix Day" isn't held is because if it were, nothing would happen. No fatwas would be issued calling for someone's death, no bricks would be thrown through windows, no riots, no calls for the death of the perpetrators. Sure, some strong criticisms would be leveled, perhaps even some boycotts called for and angry words exchanged among a few. All within the dictates of civilized behavior. Most people wouldn't notice or care.

The point in "Everybody Draw Mohammed" Day is to react to the barbaric practice of calling for the death of those who may, intentionally or otherwise, insult Mohammed or Islam.

The only blind ignorant rage I see is perpetrated by muslims every time they feel offense. They need to learn to deal with offense in a civilized way, like the other religions do.

Freedom of speech does not mean "freedom of tactful speech." Tactful speech does not need protection. It is angry, disrespectful, offensive speech that needs--and has--constitutional protection. Who's going to decide what is "tactful?" You? A government committee? No thanks.

I agree with you in that the insult Christian's feel when seeing Piss Christ is similar to that muslims feel when they see depictions of Mohammed. However there is no similarity in the way each reacts. Muslims react with barbaric violence. Christians barely react at all, or react without violence.

I like to be nice. I like to avoid confrontation. I like to avoid offending others. So I agree with your sentiment, in general. But we can't cower in fear because someone threatens to kill us if we say or draw something they find offensive.

Remember the story not long ago of a woman in a muslim country who was threatened with death because she named the class teddy bear "Muhammed?" Which is more offensive, the death threat or naming the bear? Almost everything western seems to offend a large number of muslims: music, pork, alcohol, interest on loans, women's faces, woman's arms, women's hair exposed, dating non-muslims, women driving, women getting an education, people who question Islam, Christians who try to practice their religion in predominantly muslim countries, etc.

I'm not a Christian, nor am I inclined toward religion at all, but I find your analysis misses the mark. However, I've not read any other posts of yours, so I don't know if you have an overall agenda, nor do I know what your politics are.

One more thing I'll say is this: I would have no fear whatsoever for my personal safety if I drew an offensive picture of Christ and posted it on my website, or even if I mounted it on my car. However, I personally chickened out of participating in the "draw mohammed" activities today because I feared for my personal safety. That is not an irrational fear. It is based in reality.

Tim

No amount of ignorant, hateful, offensive can match the 139 real human beings killed when angry Muslims went on their stupid temper-tantrum over the drawing of their prophet in a Danish newspaper. How about the cold-blooded murder of Theo Van Gogh? The fatwa issued against Salman Rushdie? How about people like Ayaan Hirsi Ali, or Lars Vilks, or Kurt Westergaard, who have to live under constant surveillance or armed guard, for nothing other than the practice of free expression. And they aren't residents of Kabul or Islamabad, but Denmark, Sweden, The Netherlands.

This is a response to that real violence.

Darren

Wouldn't you call FB's behavior "selective censorship"?

The wacko religious zealots do not scare me. It is the contradiction of FB's statements that is discomforting. They are using a tool (Internet) whose benign intent was the free flow of information and ideas. However, because human beings own the tool, their personal feelings drive what is considered "acceptable" to their interests...Religion bashing seems to sell better for them rather than tales of racism (The religous blog responses go on for days).

In my mind, both are bad and should be discouraged by FB, twitter and the other web trolls.....

Ali

I fully agree with the author. There have been 1000s of books written against Islam & it Prophet. Muslims never came on roads against that.

Criticism of religion is good as it gives us a chance to explain. But when you start you start abusing people for the sake of it, it is not free speech. You are just hurting the feelings and enjoying that.

If Muslims don't insult Christ, Moses, Abrahim (they give equal respect to them), at least they deserve not to be insulted. Criticism of Islam, yes - abuse & insult, NO!

By doing such activities, you are just pushing us moderates out of the pictures. You guys are real friends of Osama & Taliban. You are proving to ordinary Muslims that extremists are right about the west. Please argue within reason so that we could control extremists!

Dan

Wrong. Facebook didn't obliterate it. Liberals did with their FORCING politically correct crap down our throats.

Oh, and btw, drawing someone is far less offensive (*FAR* less offensive) than seeing someone
else in a bottle of urine.

You fail.

Tommy De Seno

Far less offensive to you Dan, but not to Muslims. That's part of my point.

Kris Kocher

“Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace-- but there is no peace…What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” — Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775.

Do these words still ring true today Mr. De Seno? Do you want peaceful, non-offending, non-insulting, muzzled expressions, or true freedom? While I will admit that true freedom of expression can often be offending and insulting, I will not be cowered to accept anything less.

Are their limits to true freedom ? Yes! There must be. You do not have the freedom or right to commit fraud, to slander, to impersonate, to incite riots, to commit murder or order conspiracies to commit murder. You see these are acts which have gone beyond words and deserve restrictions. But freedom of expression whether it be political, ideological or religious are in the realm of thoughts and opinions. Put it in writing and it is freedom of the press.

For example, the Civil War was the eventual result of those offensive abolitionists who dared to challenge the established practice of slavery. They hated slavery and the implication that just because you are born black, that you should be hated and enslaved. This is true racism and an abuse of freedom since skin color cannot be changed. It is not like a false idea that can be examined, seen for the error that it is, and remedied. While you can change your belief that the earth is flat, you cannot change your skin color. Racism and its expression in slavery are acts of evil and abuses of freedom.

Religion, however, is in the realm of ideas and thoughts. You say that Facebook has obliterated civilized discourse? I say that true freedom of expression has been allowed no matter how offensive. It has showcased a clash of ideologies. It shows the true freedom that we have in America that began with the Magna Carta and became enshrined in our Constitution and Bill of Rights. It also reveals the barbaric nature of Muslims who forbid dissent against Mohammad and cartoon caricatures. They issue death threats to intimidate and even kill many to silence the opposition. This sounds more like the heavy foot of Rome during the Pax Roman than true peace and freedom.

That is not my vision of America. That is not the vision of our founding fathers. As I believe Ben Franklin wisely said, “Those willing to give up a little liberty for a little security deserve neither security nor freedom”. I will not willingly live in a fascist state. Will you?

Tommy De Seno

Kris,

What part of "Americans must fight like hell for the right to draw a picture of Muhammad, then choose not to" did you fail to understand?

My column, if you'll pay attention while reading it, is about exceptionalism in speech. The desecration of relgious sympbols is very inadequate expression.

The quotes you cite by Patrick Henry and Ben Franklin are exceptional. I didn't see either one of them piss on a crucifix to make their point - did you?

I call for no censorship of Muhammad drawings or Piss Christ. Along with Voltaire, I'll die for the right of people to do it. But that doesn't mean that once I've secured your freedom to do it, I have to agree with it.

You see I'm past the question of Free Speech. OF course it's Free Speech. That's a given.

I'm on to the issue of whether it's speech anyone wants to make, if we are going to lead the world (like we American do in all good things) in being superior communicators.

Which brings me to my question to you:

Do you support or condemn Piss Christ. Don't talk to me about the free speech right of the artist to do it. We all agree he has it.

Do you suppor or condemn the photograph in its art and substantive expression?


ruthie

I support "Piss Christ". The man who made it, an artist, may have thought it was beautiful. And that may have been his point. And what is so horrible about piss? It's made by humans, all humans -- Christians, Jews, those other people whose name I guess you can't mention without getting Daniel Pearled, Bhuddists. Piss is a natural secretion created by God I defy you to say that Piss Christ was ugly. If you didn't know it was piss, you wouldn't care. How about if Christ was submerged in blood? What if the blood was to be construed as his own.

But enough of that crap. Here's the real point. If you think some Muslims go to rage and/or kill people because they honestly feel their prophet is being insulted you are a five year old child. They do it because THEY feel insulted. The Prophet is an excuse. These losers, these Muslim men feel prestige has passed them by (it has) they feel deballed, they feel like women ( the subset they can actually best and push around) and they feel more than anything else -- SORRY FOR THEMSELVES. Ashamed of their slight role in modern events, and ashamed of their inability to put in place humane, non-corrupt self-governemt., ashamed of the fact they have to bring in other people to pump their oil. Self-pity is the key to understanding radical Islam and Jihad. Not anger. Heard of the tyranny of the weak? Jihad.

We can draw whatever we want, whoever we want, whenever we want and so can every human on the planet, the planet they would like to see destroyed in an apocalypse.

Tommy De Seno

Ruthie you have the advantage of not allowing the rest of us know what tangible thing you hold dear.

ruthie

I thought I'd explained it. Freedomof expression? Whatever the opposite of hypocrisy is? I hold those things dear. But when you say "tangible" things I don't know what you're talking about. Are those things tangible?

"Life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness" for example. Are those tangibles? I don't think so. But you didn't address one point I made so who cares. Did you not understand my point about jihad? It's not complex. My guess is you need to APPEAR broadminded and even PC at times so you can continue your boilerplate right wing grousing under cover of being not entirely intolerant. Or maybe, as Adolf Menjou's character in "Path's of Glory" said to Kirk Douglas's character "Dax, you amaze me. You really did care about those men. [Radical Islamists and jihadis in this case]. You're an idealist. And I pity you as I would the village idiot."

Tommy De Seno

Ruthie continues to hide what tangible things she holds dear.

Coward.

ruthie

What tangible things I hold dear? Are you stupid? Can't you read? I'm a coward? Does anyone understand what this boob is talking about? This guy who pathetically blows up like a weather balloon because Fox news reprints his mediocre thoughts? Blow it our your ass, De Seno.

ruthie

So Tommy struts around like a puffed up zeppola when Roger Ailes tosses him a chicken bone. Yeah okay it's pathetic. But we all have our faults, even cartoons.

o'raly

Cartoons are only the iceberg tip
Muslims “do and do not actions
Do: Outrage against cartoons
Do not: Antiterorisms demonstration
Do: Building Mosks worldwide
Do not:Permit building of non Islam praying homes in many Muslim controlled areas
Do: Demanding freedom for all aspects of Muslim culture worldwide
Do not: Demand Muslim recognition of free&peaceful coexistence among all cultures
Do: Demand free Islamic preaching
Do not: Stop incitement& individual Jihad against the host country

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